Puerto Vallarta offers one of the greatest gastronomic scenes in the country; in second place for food and beverage establishments per capita, just behind Mexico City. Enjoying a vacation here or settling in for a season is the perfect opportunity to try assorted international cuisine specialties, as well as the more traditional and representative dishes of Mexico.
On the other hand, eating at outdoor food stands is a fun alternative for learning more about the destination’s culinary culture, as well as an excellent way to sample the exquisite flavors Puerto Vallarta is renowned for around the world. Our delicious selection of options will surprise you with their exquisite specialties and charming atmospheres. Obviously, many more exist, but these are some of the tastiest and most interesting in the city. Enjoy!
Marisma Fish Taco
Why it is the best: Since 1990, Marisma Fish Taco has offered the traditional recipe of Baja California’s battered tacos, but with a crispier twist. With the passage of time and using the freshest products from Banderas Bay, this specialty has become the calling card of this famous stand, as it is also among the favorites of Vallartenses. The menu is complemented by smoked marlin, crab, squid, ceviche tostadas, quesadillas with marlin, shrimp and fish, plus grilled fish and shrimp, among other specialties. To accompany them, try a refreshing natural fruitade. Some tables at the side of the stand are available for seated dining.
- What to order: Definitely, the fish tacos and battered shrimp, as well as the smoked marlin quesadillas.
- Location: Naranjo 320, Emiliano Zapata.
- Hours: Tuesday to Sunday, from 10:00am to 5:00pm. Cash only.
Auto Grill Fast Food
Why it is the best: From the creators of the emblematic Italian restaurant Espresso, Auto Grill Fast Food opened just this year. This fast food truck provides the same quality that characterized the former Romantic Zone establishment. Their burgers, paninis and hot dogs feature homemade bread, and the menu is complemented with salads, fries and chicken nuggets. Beverages include wine by the glass, draft beer and soft drinks. Several tables around the yellow truck invite you to take a seat to enjoy your meal with friends.
- What to order: A delicious hamburger with 100 percent top-quality beef, French fries and a draft beer.
- Location: Josefa Ortiz de Domínguez 157-A, El Centro.
- Hours: Monday to Saturday, from 5:00pm to 2:00am. Cash only.
Why it is the best: They say that the best sign of whether a taco stand is good is the number of people who frequent it, and Pancho’s Takos confirms this premise. Since 1989, they have been offering tacos al pastor so delicious that they attract both residents and visitors. Over time, their specialties grew to include items such as avocados stuffed with beef, chicken or mushrooms, au gratin potatoes with steak, chorizo or al pastor, quesadillas, cheese alambres and a variety of melted cheeses. Available beverages include fruitades, domestic beers, basic cocktails and wine by the glass. Although several tables are available, it is best to allow some extra time, as there may be a waiting list.
- What to order: The tacos al pastor or an order of chicken with cheese and a stuffed avocado.
- Location: Basilio Badillo 162, Emiliano Zapata.
- Hours: Monday to Sunday, from 6:00pm to 2:00am. Cash only.
Fast Truck by La Leche
Why it is the best: Since 2013, the parking lot of prestigious restaurant La Leche has been home to the Fast Truck, which offers appetizers such as gourmet arrachera tacos and assorted burritas (chicken, arrachera, seafood or vegetables wrapped in a large flour tortilla), which are accompanied with delicious dressings that give them a special touch. To the side of the truck, there are two small tables, ideal for family or close friends.
- What to order: La Burrita Vallarta (shrimp, fish and cheddar cheese) or the Burrita Veggie (poblano chile, corn, mushrooms and cheese), accompanied with potato wedges.
- Location: Blvd. Francisco Medina Ascencio KM 2, North Hotel Zone.
- Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 1:00pm to 11:00pm Cash only.
Keep your eyes open as you stroll around Puerto Vallarta and its surroundings, as you can discover a delicious, extraordinary and unforgettable food stand in the most unexpected places. Bon appetit!